Monday, January 25, 2010

Exercise: How much is enough?

Tough question indeed! Today we find people sweating in gyms and on roads while jogging! “Fitness freak” is the new ‘hero’ who is riding our hearts and brains. Medical journals are shouting an appeal to reduce weight to fight twenty first century bugs of obesity. While our fit friends keep on giving us a complex, we try to walk on their footsteps but fail to elicit desired results. What to do? Shall we just ignore warnings of our health experts?

No! Not at all! We must pay heed to the caution that lack of exercise can lead to disaster on all levels. The syndrome X that comprises of diabetes mellitus, hypertension, and hypercholesterolemia results due to sedentary lifestyles and these are the killers and lead to end organ damage. So, we must protect ourselves from them. And exercise is the best weapon available. It is the single weapon that can put an end to all the problems in future. Then why do we fail to achieve what we should do? In global survey, it has been found that the major reason why fitness programs fail is the boredom associated with same fitness routine everyday. Walking treadmills or climbing steps may make you feel tired of repetitions.

That’s why fitness enthusiasts try inculcating different fitness regimes every day or throughout the week. Walk your favorite street, climb the neighboring hill, dance to your favorite music or give yourself a stress-free yoga for a day! All these burn calories and repetitions can be maintained as and when needed to burn more calories as per requirement. Most importantly, making yourself free from the fixed time table gives you a powerful mental boost to carry on with the fitness regime unabated.

Well, now the issue of boredom is solved. But how much is enough? How to calculate that? Let’s see.

To improve your fitness level and stamina, it is recommended by experts that you should exercise daily for at least 30 minutes or three times a week for around 1 hour. But calculative things help for short term. We do not calculate our eating schedules so very scrupulously because we love to eat. Similarly when the fitness regime becomes the way of life and part of your happy day to day schedule, you will enjoy your exercise. It is advised by experts that decide your exercise depending upon your pulse rate. It is calculated that one should exercise at the rate of 50 to 88% of his or her pulse rate. Begin slowly however. No haste will do well. Slowly enhance your work out capacity and decide what suits you the best. You can consult your physician to decide what should be your daily exercise and how to go about it.

The major thing one should understand is that we cannot generalize the exercise regime. As we say in homeopathy, each individual is different and so different homeopathic medicines may be indicated for same problem, exercise is no different. Do not compare yourself with anyone else. But at the same time, getting inspired by others is good thing to do.

There is technique for every exercise. Be it walking or treadmill exercise. By far it is advised by experts that for a harmless and full-body exercise, brisk walking is the best exercise. So, in your variety of exercises it is advisable to give few days for a great and rejuvenating walk. We will see the methodology to walk and rules to follow in my next write up! Till then enjoy your changed exercise regime!

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